J Gregory Coutinho

EVENTS:  Upcoming Exhibit:  Beaches  7/11 - 7/23  2024  Galaxy Gallery  Martha's Vineyard, MA  

 

Green Guy Greg here. Earth Day is EVERY DAY. The following is an ever-evolving "green" guide... to how we can make simple, convenient changes in our every day lives to help shrink our carbon footprints (reduce carbon emissions and fossil fuel pollution), with a focus on reducing/eliminating our consumption of plastic.

Here's why I choose to focus especially on plastic: ( If you don't need the why and want to skip to the links list of plastic-free alternative products, scroll toward the bottom of this page ):

 

 * Plastic is made from fossil fuels ( crude oil and more recently, natural gas/methane ), but is the most   overlooked, under-addressed problem within the fossil fuel pollution conversation.

 * Plastic can only be recycled a maximum of twice 

 * Less than 9% is ever recycled anyway

 * None of it is biodegradable 

 

Therefore, all plastic is pollution. All plastic ever produced still exists on Earth, won't go away for centuries, and we're only adding exponentially more every day. We all participate in perpetuating this problem, more or less, and have been for decades under the lie that plastic is "recycleable". Here's how we can change that from the consumer end: 

 

The basics-

 

~ If plastic shopping bags aren't yet banned in your area, always bring our own reusable bags to the store. Never accept a plastic one, even for produce, and don't buy pre-packaged produce. Store your produce/leftover food in reusable pyrex, glass, stainless steel or ridgid plastic aka "tupperware" containers at home instead of "disposable" plastic ziploc bags or cling-wrap.

 

~ Buy a water purifier and a stainless steel or glass water bottle- never buy plastic bottled water again.

 

~ Always refuse plastic straws for beverages (this gets ridiculed but it's no small effort). Also, always refuse utensils and other unnecessary single-use items when ordering takeout or delivery.

 

~ Buy rice, grains, beans and nuts in bulk, and bring your own bags for them as well.

 

Ask yourself these questions before any purchase you make: 

 

* Is this product made of, packaged in or bottled in plastic? If so, do I need it at all?

 

* If yes, is there another product that serves the same purpose which is not made

of, packaged or bottled in plastic? ( Plastic includes synthetic polyester, nylon, vinyl  & acrylic  clothing/fabrics/carpet. 'Microfiber' fabric is plastic, as well as 'tri-blend'

fabric, which is usually least 33% plastic. These synthetic fabrics are not only the leading sources of billions of micro plastics in the ocean as a result of microfibers shedding from our laundry down the drain in the washer, but shed and spread everywhere on land from regular wear. Microplastics are now being discovered in our blood and our lungs )

 

* Then do the research- it's easy with the internet, but 

the links list toward the bottom of this page provides many

plastic-free product alternatives to make that research even easier.

Otherwise, instead of Google I recommend Ecosia. It's a carbon-zero search engine/browser that plants trees around the world for aprox. every 45 searches you make, and donates sustainable projects to communities in need.

 

Combustion:

~ Seamlessly choose an ESCO ( Energy Service Company ) that supplies electricity sourced from 100% wind/solar to your home through your local utility company. Your utility co. will provide a list on their website or by mail upon request.

 

~ Pull out of big oil/gas/coal ( fossil fuel ) companies in your investment portfolio. Reinvest in renewable energy and other eco-friendly companies. Aspiration banking  is one source to look into.

 

~ More to come! I'm looking forward to making this guide more comprehensive- possibly with help of the blog page- replete with more facts, stats, cited soures, and links to websites and articles that inform and motivate you. In the meantime regarding plastic, I encourage you to refer to the 22 shocking facts at  ecowatch.com which expound on why I feel this is such an important and urgent matter for all.

The plastics/fossil fuel industry can be weakened by the power of the consumer! 

When heeded, consider yourself Green-Guyed!     @dont_plasticipate

 

 

TO ASSIST YOU IN THE ABOVE GREEN GUYDANCE, BELOW IS A LINKS LIST IN PROGRESS, OF PLASTIC/PETROLEUM-FREE ALTERNATIVES TO PRODUCTS WE REGULARLY USE:

( some listed are *affiliates, indicated by a red star*, which means I'll get a % of the sale if you make a purchse after clicking on the provided link. All product names are links, whether underlined or not ).

 

 

LAUNDRY SOAP:

 

* Blueland ( tablet dissolves in water, no PVA! )   

 

* *Eco Roots  ( Wool Dryer Balls on same page- plastic free alternative to dryer sheets. Dryer sheets are plastic )

 

**Dropps ( The jury is still out on Polyvinyl Alcohol, aka PVA, which may not completely break down after 

dissolving )

 

**Earth Breeze

( The jury is still out on Polyvinyl Alcohol, aka PVA, which may not completely break down after dissolving )


**ME Mother Earth    

( See above   comments on PVA. Also, liquid castille soap in an aluminum bottle.  Many other plastic-free houshold products available, including Tangie Laundry Soap concentrate bar = 256 loads )


**Lochtree  ( TrueEarth laundry brand.  See above   comments on PVA )

 

* Etee       

 

Sheets ( Also plastic-free dryer sheets and other houshold cleaning products. See above comments on PVA )   

 

 

DISH SOAP ( manual and dishwasher ) : 

 

**ME Mother Earth  

 

* No Tox Life Diswashing Block  ( at *Lochtree )

 

Etee Liquid Dish Soap ( concentrate in a beezwax tube, add to water in a glass pump bottle )

 

* Blueland ( dishwasher tablet , no PVA! )

 

 

SHAMPOO & CONDITIONER: 

 

* *ME Mother Earth   ( bars )   

 

* J R Liggett's   ( bars )

 

* *EcoRoots  ( bars )

 

** Plaine Products  ( liquid in an aluminum bottle. Postage paid send-back box provided for empties )

 

* Plastic Free Pursuit

 

* HiBAR  ( Also Found at *Lochtree, which carries many other plastic-free products )

 

 

DEODORANT:

 

**PAPR Cosmetics Also Found at *Lochtree, which carries many other plastic-free products )

 

* Morton Essentials

 

* Brooklyn Grooming

 

* Hey Humans  ( Jada Pinkett Smith's plastic-free line )

  

 

RAZORS ( replacement blades cost a fraction of those plastic cartridges ): 

 

**ME Mother Earth

 

* *EcoRoots

 

**Lochtree

 

Albatross Shaves Premium Safety Razor ( sold at Package Free Shop )

 

* Leaf Shave ( 3-Blade pivoting head; or the smaller, single-blade Twig.  Also sold at  Lochtree   and Package Free Shop )

 

 

BANDAGE STRIPS ( alternative to plastic "BANDAID" ) :

 

* *PATCH (  also at *Lochtree ) ( bamboo bandage strips in multiple colors- not plastic like BandAid and other name brands.

  Find 'Strap' Bamboo Body Tape at PATCH too )

 

 

TOOTHBRUSHES ( manual and electric ):

 

**ME Mother Earth ( Manual bamboo toothbrushes as well as Bamboo replacement brush heads compatible w/ Sonicare electric toothbrush ). Use code GREGORYCOUTINHO for 10% off when you checkout after accessing their site through my link by above, next to the**

 

* Package Free Bamboo Toothbush   ( adult and child sizes )

 

* Sustainable Tomorrow  ( Electric toothbrush, similar to Sonicare. Also, bamboo replacement heads compatible with actual Sonicare )


We Fill Good ( Also, bamboo replacement heads compatible with actual Sonicare )

 

* SURI electric toothbrush

 

 

TOOTHPASTE ( or you can DIY a recipe w baking soda, coconut oil & peppermint oil, etc ):

 

* *ME Mother Earth

 

**Lochtree

 

* Bite

 

Package Free Shop ( various brands available on their Oral Care page )

 

 

DENTAL FLOSS:

 

**ME Mother Earth 

 

* *EcoRoots

 

* Dental Lace ( at *Lochtree.  Click their Bath & Body page )

 

* Bite

 

 

COTTON SWABS:

 

**ME Mother Earth

 

* Sustainable Tomorrow  ( browse from their home page to Self Care  )

 

* By Humankind

 

 

LIQUID HAND SOAP ( I recommend bar soap, but if you must...): 


** Dropps  ( pod dissolves in water as a foaming soap in a glass pump bottle.  

The jury is still out on Polyvinyl Alcohol, aka PVA, which may not completely break down after 

dissolving )

 

* Blueland ( tablet dissolves in water as a foaming soap in a glass pump bottle )

 

 

BODY LOTION:

 

** Plaine Products

 

* Hey Humans

 

 

SUNSCREEN:

 

**Raw Elements( Use my Affiliate Discount Code: RAWSCREEN10 )

 

**Lochtree ( Raw Elements also carried )

 

 

HAIR STYLING POMADE/CREAM/GEL:

 

** Plaine Products

 

* Lovett Sundries

 

 

TOILET PAPER:

 

* *Repurpose

 

* Plant Paper 

 

* Who Gives A Crap 

 

Check back for more. Other varieties carried by varius companies on this list.

 

 

PAPER TOWELS  ( instead, I recommend plastic-free reusable sponges, swedish dish cloths, rags etc[avoid "microfiber"- that's plastic/polyester], for less waste. Find varieties at ME Mother Earth, Lochtree, EcoRoots, Package Free, Blueland, all elswhere on this links list... but if you must, go with plastic-free packaged bamboo paper towels):

 

* *Repurpose( use my exclusive affiliate discount code HOLIDAYS20 for 20% off $50 until 12/20/2023 )

 

 

TRASH BAGS:

 

* *Repurposer( Also carry biodgradable utensils, cups, plates, straws etc, + many other plastic-free products.

Use my exclusive affiliate discount code  HOLIDAYS20  for 20% off $50 until 12/20/2023. )g

 

* EcoSafe ( sold at Green Paper Products, which also carries biodgradable utensils, cups, straws etc )

 

 

BEVERAGE CUPS, PARTYWARE, TABLEWARE:

 

* Ball Aluminum Cup ( reusable, light weight, infinitely recyclable alternative to single-use plastic SOLO cup, found in most stores where disposable cups are also found: Target, CVS, ACE, Stop & Shop, Walmart, Party City, Kroger, Safeway, Albertsons, ShopRite, Circle K, Sprouts, & Publix )

 

* Steelys Drinkware ( bulk order stainless steel drinkware )

 

* *Repurposer( Biodgradable utensils, cups, plates, straws etc, + many other plastic-free products. 

Use my exclusive affiliate discount code  HOLIDAYS20  for 20% off $50 until 12/20/2023 )

 

* Green Paper Products  ( also carries biodgradable utensils, cups, plates, straws etc )

 

 

MATTRESSES ( no polyester/plastic fabrics or petroleum-based foam cushioning ):

 

* *Essentia  "The World's Only Natural Memory Foam Mattress"

 

* *My Green Mattress  

 

* Avocado Green Mattress 

 

* Awara Sleep

 

* COCO-MAT

 

* GhostBed Natural

 

 

PHONE CASES:

 

**Pela Case ( 100% compostable plant-based "plastic" phone cases for most sizes of iOS and Android. Smart watch bands also available, as well as other accessories. I receive 10% of every sale made through the Pela Case link above )

 

 

DIAPERS:

 

* Dyper

 

 

SANITIZING WIPES:

 

* Biom  ( unlike Clorox and Lysol brands,  wipes are biodegradable and container is refillable )

 

 

MAILERS / PACKAGING, SHIPPING MATERIALS / PACKING TAPE:

 

* EcoEnclose

 

 

ART SUPPLIES / SCHOOL SUPPLIES / OFFICE SUPPLIES:

 

** Natural Earth Paint( see their Natural Acrylik Paint, the first of its kind )

 

* Wisdom Supply Co.

 

 

LIGHTERS ( matches are always a good alternative, but if you must...):

 

* Etsy  ( Rechargeable. Many varieties. Some will come in unneccesary plastic packaging but that's still better   than disposing of countless plastic butane lighters )

 

 

SHOES/SNEAKERS:

 

* 8000 Kicks ( Waterproof Hemp Shoes with Algea Bloom Soles. Backpacks too. )

 

 

 

MISCELLANUOUS ( all of the above and more, including MENSTRUAL PRODUCTS ):

 

* Simple Switch

 

* * Zero Waste Store

 

 

If you're in NYC however, walk into the stores listed below and find many of the products carried by the companies above, for one-stop shopping/no shipping! All stores below also have bulk refillery sections as well( bring your own container, refill a variety of products) :

 

 

* A Sustainable Village ( 318 E 9th St, 10003 )

 

Earth & Me  ( 2 locations in Astoria, Queens; one in Park Slope, Brookyn )

 

* Precycle  ( Mostly groceries, some hair care. Two locations in Brooklyn: 50 Cypress Ave 11237  &  592 Vanderbilt Ave 11238 )

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

 

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